Ships Ahoy

June 21 (LBO) – The Shipping Corporation has clinched a deal with Iran to buy an oil tanker and two container ships to begin feeder operations to the Colombo Port a top official said.

There are several private feeder services carrying cargo to Colombo. The Shipping Corporation charters out its only two vessels.

We are open to partnerships with other local companies and are open to different options such as consortium to share the business,” Deheragoda said.

To have steady feeder operations, there has to be about two or three vessels such as for weekly services, for calling on more ports and longer voyage time more ships have to be deployed. In the long run, we expect to have about 60-70 percent filled capacity.”

The Colombo Port currently handles 2.7 million TEUs, with 75 percent of outbound from the Indian subcontinent.

We are hoping we can begin operations by the end of this year,” Deheragoda said.

Under recent government level talks to improve trade between the countries, Iran’s Ministry of Transport had agreed to a special credit line to finance the purchase.

We made a specific request for a special long term credit line,